One of the world's largest non-fiction film events in the world, IDFA (the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam) has unveiled its program for the upcoming 26th annual fest opening November 20. This year's lineup includes 288 films with 100 having their World Premieres at the festival.
IDFA's feature competition will feature fifteen films from around the world, including the debut of U.S. filmmakers Henry Corra and Regina Nicholson's Farewell to Hollywood, described as a “heartwarming yet heartbreaking and controversial ode to 17-year-old Reggie, who is struggling with cancer, her family and the realization of her cinematic dream.” Chinese artist Air Weiwei makes another appearance in a documentary, this time by Danish filmmaker Andreas Johnsen in Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case. Named the world's “most powerful artist” by ArtReview magazine, the famed Chinese dissident takes a re-assessment of his struggles in the latest doc. Last year he was the subject of American filmmaker Alison Klayman's Ai WeiWei: Never Sorry.
This year, a special themed program is dedicated to documentaries from Southeast Asia: Emerging Voices from Southeast Asia. Cambodian director Rithy Panh, whose film Duch, Masters of the Forges of Hell (2012), S21: The Khemer Rouge Death Machine (2002) and The Land of the Wandering Souls (1999) screened at Film Society's Cambodian Cinema series last spring, will select this year's “IDFA Top 10.” A retrospective of his work will also take place during the festival.
A number of IDFA titles regularly head to the U.S. film festival circuit following their debuts. FilmLinc.com will be in Amsterdam during the festival for coverage of the 26th IDFA, which takes place November 20 – December 1.
IDFA Competition for Feature-Length Documentary: 15 films compete this year in IDFA’s competition for feature-length documentaries.The jury, made up of Jose Carlos Avellar (Brazil), Katerina Cizek (Canada), Nicole Guillemet (USA), Chris McDonald (Canada) and Jiska Rickels (the Netherlands), will award the VPRO IDFA Award for Best Feature-Length Documentary, a cash prize consisting of €12,500. The jury may also make a Special Jury Award.
Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case by Andreas Johnsen (Denmark)
Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei wonders, after three months of lonely confinement, what the price of his struggle is.
Alphabet by Erwin Wagenhofer (Austria/Germany)
Arm-in-arm in the classroom or painting whatever you want? An indictment of competitive education and a plea for the imagination of the individual.
Birth of a Tiger by Sam Benstead (England)
The newly formed nation of South Sudan employs a Serbian coach to get its national football team up and running.
Displaced Persons by Åsa Blanck & Johan Palmgren (Sweden)
Forty years ago, Pelle Persson left Sweden and settled in Pakistan. Now he returns to his motherland with the family he started far from home.
Farewell to Hollywood by Henry Corra & Regina Nicholson (USA)
A heartwarming yet heartbreaking and controversial ode to 17-year-old Reggie, who is struggling with cancer, her family and the realization of her cinematic dream.
An Inconsolable Memory by Aryan Kaganof (South Africa)
A reconstruction of the history of South Africa’s first opera company, Eoan, and an exercise in getting at the truth of what it was to be “a colored.”
Life Almost Wonderful by Svetoslav Draganov (Bulgaria/Belgium)
An observational documentary about three brothers and their granny. Despite their hardships, they still believe happiness is just a hope away.
Ne me quitte pas by Niels van Koevorden & Sabine Lubbe Bakker (the Netherlands)
A Direct Cinema portrait of the Flemish Bob and the Walloon Marcel, two Belgian friends who share loneliness, humor, alcoholism and suicide plans with great élan.
Putin’s Games by Alexander Gentelev (Russia/Austria)
The 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia are breaking all records when it comes to corruption and megalomania. This investigative documentary uncovers the hidden story behind Putin's Games.
Return to Homs by Talal Derki (Syria/Germany)
A remarkably intimate portrait of the unequal struggle of a group of young revolutionaries in Homs, Syria, against the national army destroying their city.
Sepideh by Berit Madsen (Denmark)
A portrait of a courageous young Iranian woman who refuses to conform to expectations and dreams of a future as an astronaut.
Shado'man by Boris Gerrets (the Netherlands)
A cinematic portrait of the nocturnal street life of the disabled in Sierra Leone, in which a group of friends reflects on their complex existences.
Song from the Forest by Michael Obert (Germany)
American Louis Sarno has been living for 25 years in the jungle, among the pygmies of central Africa. Now he’s taking his pygmy son to see America for the first time.
Stream of Love by Agnes Sós (Hungary)
Love and desire still fill the hearts and thoughts of elderly villagers in Transylvania, Hungary. Their spirits are young, despite their years.
The Wild Years by Ventura Durall (Spain)
Living without money or adult involvement, three street children struggle to survive in the capital of Ethiopia.
IDFA First Appearances Competition: In the IDFA Competition for First Appearance, 15 debut films compete for the IDFA Award for Best First Appearance. The jury consists of Mark Adams (England), Joslyn Barnes (USA), Michiel van Erp (the Netherlands), Hanka Kastelicova (Czech Republic) and Stephan Vanfleteren (Belgium). The best debut film receives €5,000.
#chicagoGirl — The Social Network Takes on a Dictator by Joe Piscatella (USA, 2013, 74 min.)
Ariel by Laura Bari (Canada, 2013, 90 min.)
Ashes by Idrissa Guiro/Mélanie Pavy (France, 2013, 74 min.)
Barre's Silence by Morvarid Peyda/Mehrdad Ahmadpour (Iran, 2013, 68 min.)
Broadcasting the End – A Tale About a Magic Mountain by Martijn Payens (The Netherlands, 2013, 47 min.)
The Coal Miner's Day by Gaël Mocaer (France, 2013, 80 min.)
Documented by Jose Antonio Vargas (USA, 2013, 90 min.)
First to Fall by Rachel Beth Anderson (England/USA, 2013, 80 min.)
Forest of the Dancing Spirits by Linda Västrik (Sweden/Canada, 2013, 104 min.)
I, Afrikaner by Annalet Steenkamp (South Africa, 2013, 94 min.)
Judgement in Hungary by Eszter Hajdú (Hungary, 2013, 104 min.)
Light Fly, Fly High by Beathe Hofseth/Susann Østigaard (Norway, 2013, 58 min.)
Men with Balls by Kristóf Kovács (Hungary, 2013, 68 min.)
My Name is Salt by Farida Pacha (India/Switzerland, 2013, 90 min.)
Nora Noh by Sung-hee Kim (South Korea, 2013, 93 min.)